Latest Updates on Business and Itasca County Regarding COVID-19
IEDC is here to serve the businesses and individuals in this community by providing clear, concise information to help them thrive or sustain. In the current climate, information is coming from all sides, and while it is well intended, often can leave one confused about what is available to them.
Our commitment at IEDC is to always provide the most up to date, accurate information available.
IEDC Economic Disaster Resources Meeting Agendas
We called together daily meetings to provide a platform for precise communication of the economic climate for our businesses. We will now be continuing our meetings at 1:00 pm daily. The first hour will be our meeting and then we will keep the call up and running with the possibility of the Governor's updates at 2:00 pm daily!
A meeting agenda will be posted by 12:00 PM daily. Some information will be repetitive as the participants may change daily.
Please our Join Zoom Meeting at https://zoom.us/j/605752306 with Meeting ID: 605 752 306 or call in options:
- +13126266799,,605752306# US (Chicago)
+19292056099,,605752306# US (New York)
- Agenda for March 18th, 2020 @ 2:00 PM
- Agenda for March 19th, 2020 @ 2:00 PM
- Agenda for March 20th, 2020 @ 2:00 PM
- Agenda for March 23rd, 2020 @1:00 PM
- Agenda for March 24th, 2020 @ 1:00 PM
- Agenda for March 25th, 2020 @ 1:00 PM
- Agenda for March 26th, 2020 @ 1:00 PM
- Agenda for March 27th, 2020 @ 1:00 PM
- Agenda for March 30th, 2020 @ 1:00 PM
- Agenda for March 31st, 2020 @ 1:00 PM
Stay at Home Order
"Beginning on Friday, March 27, 2020 at 11:59 pm through Friday, April 10, 2020 at 5:00 pm, all persons currently living within the State of Minnesota are ordered to stay at home or in their place of residence except to engage in the Activities and Critical Sector work. For purposes of this Executive Order, homes or residences include hotels, motels, shared rental units, shelters, and similar facilities, to the extent they are used for lodging. This Executive Order does not restrict virtual work or telework (i.e. work from home), and Minnesotans working in any field are encouraged to work from their home or residence as much as possible."
For acces to the entire Stay at Home Order, please follow the link below.
In light of the current situation, IEDC has received numerous questions about “Shelter in Place.” Although, Minnesota has not called for shelter in place, there are several other states that have taken this action. We thought it prudent to provide some guidance in this area. However, this is not an all-inclusive list, we are simply providing insights and hope to help you, the business owner, think about your own businesses and processes.
To access the checklist, click here.
For information on federal standards for "essential businesses," click here.
Business Impact Assessment
Attention business owners or upper management!
COVID-19 is a rolling-disaster that has reshaped the business landscape. Things are changing on an hour to hour, day to day basis. To help prepare for a full recovery and the possible application for businesses financial assistance, Itasca Economic Development Corporation will be conducting a series of business surveys to monitor the impact of COVID-19 on business operations in the Itasca County area. As a business executive, we would very much appreciate your response. It will take approximately 7 minutes to complete the survey. Your responses are absolutely confidential. Responses will only be reported in aggregate. If you ask for help, IEDC will reach out to you personally if your contact information is provide. The results will be used to inform local and state elected officials, government agencies and others.
We have put together a unique webpage for funding resources that are available for businesses in Itasca County who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
On this page, you will find the following types of loans:
- Itasca Small Business Relief Loan
- SBA Resources
- State of Minnesota Small Business Emergency Loan
- Entrepreneur Fund
The CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security) Act was signed by President Trump to help provide financial stability and relief for individuals and businesses affected by COVID-19. This bill is very broad and we will try and have as much information on this topic as possible as we continue to navigate through these difficult times.
We have included a Small Business Guide and Small Business Checklist for the CARES Act. Both are great tools for a small business owner to use when looking for more information regarding loans and more!
Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)
On March 18, 2020, President Donald Trump signed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) into law. Impacted employers must be in compliance with this law by April 2, 2020. To help explain the provisions and requirements of this law and related topics, Authored by Christopher Beinecke and Dawn Kramer from the Marsh & McLennan Agency. This document summarizes recent actions taken by both the federal and state governments affecting employer-provided health benefits and provides a user friendly guide on what is required to be in compliance with the FFCRA.
Remaining calm is easier said than done given the relentless stream of news about the spread of novel coronavirus (“COVID-19”) across the globe. This article summarizes recent actions taken by both the federal and state governments affecting employer-provided health benefits as well as certain other related issues.
To access the full article, click here.
Business Resource Updates
-SALES TAX: In line with the state’s continued response to COVID-19, the Minnesota Department of Revenue is granting a 30-day Sales and Use Tax grace period for businesses identified in Executive Order 20-04. During this time the department will not assess penalties or interest.
- Identified businesses with a monthly Sales and Use Tax payment due March 20, 2020, have until April 20 to make that payment. These businesses should still file their return by March 20. At this time, this grace period for penalty and interest is only for monthly filers and only for the March 20 payment. Businesses can request additional relief from penalty and interest for reasonable cause after April 20.
- If you have questions or wish to request more time, call us at 651-296-6181 or 1-800-657-3777, or email email@example.com. https://www.revenue.state.mn.us/our-response-covid-19
MN Department of Revenue Updates
It's hard to believe that a situation such as the COVID-19 pandemic happens right in the middle of tax season. Luckily, there's information that is out there regarding the IRS.
In an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 throughout Minnesota, Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites across the state may have decided to suspend services.
What should I do if I am planning to go to a VITA site to complete my income tax return? Please contact the site for updated hours of operation. View our directory of all VITA sites, along with contact information. Check back periodically to see if your site’s hours of operation have changed.
Can I complete my tax return online for free? You may be eligible to file your return electronically for free. View our list of providers to see if you qualify.
Has the income tax deadline changed? No. At this time, federal and Minnesota individual income tax returns are due April 15, 2020. We continue to monitor actions by the IRS and will update this information as necessary.
What if I cannot file and pay my taxes on time due to COVID-19? Please contact the department if you cannot file and pay on time because of COVID-19 illness or a related situation. You may ask us to abate (cancel) penalties and interest for late filing or payment if you have a reasonable cause. See penalty abatement information for individuals.
- Who can I contact with questions? If you have questions, call us at 651-556-3000 or 1-800-657-3666, or use our email form. Thank you for your understanding and patience as we move through this unique situation together.
Despite the ever-changing times, there are employers that are still searching for employees to fill critical positions in our economy. We want to make sure that you know where there are resources out there to find a job when the job needs you most. Below are links to help you in your job search.
Supporting our Industry Updates
Thanks to our friends at CEDA for their help, we will be able to provide you with information such as public building hours, meetings, utility payments, food shelves, contact information, school-aged meal options and more. So far, this information has been provided by the towns of:
- Grand Rapids
- Deer River
- Harris Township
- Hill City
- Itasca County
- Meal and Food Shelf Information
- Bank Closure Information
We hope to continue to provide updates for additonal areas as that information becomes available.
Internet providers accross our nation have pledged to "Keep Americans Connected." Please refer to the links below regarding internet access for all students that are no longer in school and the workforce who is forced to work remotely.
- Paul Bunyan
- Cell and Internet Providers for Our Area
- Access to Chromebooks for 75% off
We understand that there are more internet providers than what we have listed. We will continue to try and update this information as it becomes available to us.
We know the uncertainty that comes with running a licensed childcare program during scary times like these. However, we want you to know that there are resources available for you. Northland Foundation has set up an Emergency Child Care Grant Program.
This program, "offers immediate financial support to licensed family- and center-based child care providers caring for children whose parents/guardians are designated as emergency personnel and other essential workers."
- Northland Foundation Website
- Childcare Guidelines for Emergency Workers
- Providers with Availabily for Licensed Childcare
- Additional Resources for Childcare Providers
Resources for Manufacturing
Arrowhead Manufacturers & Fabricators Association have put together a page on their dedicated to resources that they are offering for COVID-19 Resources. General information, webinar links, essential business designation and other links are all included in their page.
To access this entire page, please click here.
AMFA has been putting together webinars. They are listed on their page, but for your convenience, we wanted to include them here.
Webinar # 3 - https://amfa-mn-wi.org/events/details/webinar-series-manufacturing-solutions-to-covid-19-challenges-1224 (This is the invite to the 3rd which is being held tomorrow).
Resources for the Arts
Itasca County is proud of our rich and vibrant arts community. We know that times are hard for everyone right now, including our artists. A list of available resources for artists has been provided to us by the Grand Marais Arts Colony. Please follow the links for more information.
Additional Links & Resources